Unlike majority of the breeds we have today, that were devoloped by deliberate breeding process, the Carolina Dog is a so called landrace breed, or primitive dog breed. This means, that they evolved naturally through adaptation to its natural and cultural environment. The ancestry of Carolina dog is unknown, but some historians believe, that they evolved from Pariah Dogs brought to North America from Asia thousands years ago, maybe even 9 or more thousand years ago! Its believed that they lived freely in largest numbers in the remote areas of South Carolina.
First written evidences about dogs similar to Carolina Dog are from 1920s, but the breed was first documented in more details in 1970s by Dr. Lehr Brisbin Jr.. Of course, Bribin was not the first person who noticed these dogs, but he was the one whose observations lead to a formal breed designation. Today, the breed is domesticated, but there are still feral Carolina dogs as well. But numbers of domesticated Carolina dogs are higher than the feral ones.
Dr Brisbin is also a person who named these dogs as Carolian Dogs. But these dogs are known under some other nicknames. Those include American Dingo, Dixie Dingo, Yellow Dog or Yaller.
The Carolina Dog is a pack oriented animal and they are extremely loyal to its pack or, if domesticated, to its family. These dogs also like to live with other dogs, but due to their higher prey drive, other smaller household pets might be problematic, but this can be vastly influenced by early socialization. The Carolina Dog is not overly affectionate breed, but they do love their people. This is also pretty independent and intelligent breed. The Carolina Dog is known to be reserved around strangers and they closely watch them, but they should never be agressive without a reason.
The Carolina Dog usually has a short and very dense coat which comes in variety of collors, usually in cream, fawn, reddish ginger, black and tan, piebald or brown. The short coat is better suited for warmer regions, but this is pretty adaptable breed and the coat is very dense, so they can adapt to colder regions as well.
The Carolina Dog is a medium sized dog and on the first sight very athletic breed. The average height is between 17-24 inches, which is 45-61 cm and weight should be between 30-65 pounds which is 15-30 kg.
The Carolina Dog shares similar appearance with other landrace dogs. They are possesing the general appearance of jackal or small wolf. These dogs have distinctive upright medium to large sized ears, pretty long neck, long curved tail, almond shaped dark eyes, large nose and relatively large paws.
After surviving hundreads of years on their own, the Carolina dog must be very intelligent dog right? And indeed it is! But that does not mean they are total pushovers to train, because this is also independent dog and they are known for stubborn streaks. Independence is also very important to survive on its own, but it makes the classic obedience training little bit harder. These dogs definitely need a very patient and consistent trainer to become absolutely obedient, especially the realiable recall command might be challenging to train. Always use positive reinforcement, always praise the dog for doing good job and always have a lot of treats as rewards for good behaviour.
Great fact about this breed is, that they are very clean and they are keeping themselves relatively clean. The coat is also very easy to groom. Of course, they do shed and you must adjust the regular brushing to the ammount of shedding. If they shed heavily, than you should brush them more often. Just like with all dogs you should regularly check the ears, eyes, nails and teeth and clean them or clip them if needed.
Just like majority of dogs that evolved naturally, even the Carolina Dog is usually extremely healthy dog breed. Recent studies have shown that some are ivermectin sensitive, so you should discuss this with veterinarian antiparasitic medications. Ocassionally these dogs can also suffer from hip and elbow dysplasia, but it is not very common. The average lifespan is between 13-15 years.